marriage bed symbol

marriage bed symbol

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Secret Sexual Sins in Marriage - Conclusion



WARNING: This post contains a topic of a sacred sexual nature and is intended for married couples only. Reader discretion is advised.
 
If you missed part [1] , [2] [3], [4],  [5] , or [6] you can go back to any of them here.

 So how can we know if what our parents or church leaders are telling us about sexuality is gospel doctrine, and not a cultural myth?

Revisiting the Law of Chastity for Marriage 

The key is to seek out gospel knowledge for ourselves.[i] This knowledge comes directly from the scriptures, official church documents and the words of the living prophets over any other source - including well-meaning members, priesthood leaders, and even close family members. If what they say doesn't concur with the scriptures or the words spoken over the pulpit at General Conference, you are right to be suspicious.

Seek confirmation of anything you hear, or read, or see, if you're not sure. If you've been baptized and you're a worthy member, you have access to the Holy Ghost. He is the perfect conduit of truth.[ii] Do your homework and come to what you feel is a reasonable decision based on what you've found, and seek heavenly affirmation.[iii] 

Then take action. Live what you've learned, and watch for the fruits of the Spirit. 

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” – Galatians 5:22-23

If you find more of those fruits in your life as a result of your actions, that's further verification that you're on the right track.

The law of chastity doesn’t disappear once we are married and sexually active with our spouses. We are still under covenant to control and channel those feelings in the direction of our spouse and no one else.
The guidelines we find in the For The Strength of Youth still apply. Having an authorized sexual channel open to those of us who are married is part of the guidelines, whereas those who are single do not. The only real difference is that, now we are married, we must learn how to properly use our sexuality in our marriages and the way the Lord wants us to. 

I talk about this in many of my articles, and will restate it here. When it comes to what a husband and wife do sexually with each other and in private sanctity, no one in the church can tell a husband and/or wife what they can or cannot do. The church’s leadership handbooks are very clear about this. 

There is a reason why it’s not spelled out in the scriptures, or in general conference talks, or in the leadership handbooks. It’s because the Lord knows that each marriage is unique. Because of this, there must be a spirit-of-the-law allowance made for sexuality in marriage. 

Like Adam and Eve’s crucible with the tree of knowledge, each married couple has the right to investigate and decide as a couple what works sexually and what doesn’t.

A good overall rule-of-thumb to use is this - if what you’re doing together sexually strengthens your friendship and edifies your marriage, it is holy to the Lord. If it doesn’t, stop what you’re doing, at least temporarily, and ‘get understanding’[iv]as to why this is.

So in a nutshell, to avoid “secret sexual sins”:
  • The ‘For The Strength of Youth’ guidelines still apply when we're married – no sexual relations outside of our marriage.
  • Get instruction or help when necessary.
  • Respect the mind, heart and feelings of our spouse
  • The Word of Wisdom applies to what we do sexually in marriage. Protect the spouse’s body as well as our own.
  • Don’t keep secrets (especially sexual secrets) from our spouses.
  • Learn and understand what sacred things are and how to have reverence for them. If we’re don’t have a correct sense of what’s sacred, we might as well be atheists. See Elder D. Todd Christofferson’s talk on “A Sense of the Sacred”[v]
  • It’s not too late to repent. Don’t let unrepented sexual transgressions stand in the way of keeping your eternal companion and your ability to have great sex into the eternities.


[i] Oaks, Dallin H., Testimony, General Conference, April 2008., https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2008/04/testimony?lang=eng

[ii] Moroni 10:5 “…and by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.”
[iii] D&C 9:7-9
[iv]  Proverbs 4    “Keep the commandments and live—With all your getting, get understanding—Go not in the way of evil men.”

[v] Christofferson, D. Todd, A Sense of the Sacred, BYU Speeches, Nov. 2004., https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/d-todd-christofferson_sense-sacred/

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